KEF opens manufacturing unit in Sharjah
Sharjah, November 10, 2008
KEF Holdings, a UAE-based manufacturer of steel castings and valves, opened its new state-of-the-art facility at Sharjah Hamriyah Free Zone, making it the first integrated manufacturer of industrial valves in Middle East.
The new 50,000-sq m facility will be operated by JC Valves Sharjah, a KEF business and certified manufacturer of industrial valves.
The facility will produce a comprehensive and specialised range of industrial valves which will cater to the Middle East’s thriving oil, gas, petrochemical and energy sectors.
The expansion follows Dubai International Capital’s acquisition of a 45 per cent stake in KEF Holdings in September 2008.
The inauguration ceremony was attended by Dr Rashid Al Leem, director general, Sharjah Hamriyah Free Zone Authority; Venu Rajamony, counsel general of India; Faizal Kottikollon, KEF Holding’s founder and CEO; and Anand Krishnan, chief operating officer of Dubai International Capital.
Also attending the ceremony were representatives of key clients of KEF including ARAMCO, ENOC, Dubai Petroleum, TAKREER, GASCO, Qatar Petroleum, Qatar Gas, Kuwait Oil Company, TOTAL, Petroleum Development Oman and Occidental Petroleum.
Kottikollon said the launch of the new plant comes as a significant leap, not only for KEF Holdings, but also for the energy sector in the UAE and the wider region as a whole.
'We believe that this plant will bring much needed self-reliance to the Middle East, reducing costs and time for our clients in the oil and gas, mining, industrial, and petrochemical industries in the Middle East, Asia, Europe, and the US.'
'The annual requirement of oil and gas valves in the Middle East is currently in excess of $3 billion and is projected to grow by 10 percent annually,' he added.
'With the support of our key shareholder, Dubai International Capital, we look forward to expansion in key growth markets to meet this demand and plans are underway to set up a similar manufacturing facility in Saudi Arabia.'
'We also plan to establish distribution and service centres in Qatar, Kuwait and Iran, which allow us to be closer to our customers.”
Speaking at the inauguration ceremony, Anand Krishnan said the opening of the unit marked an important step for KEF’s expansion across the region and its contribution towards the development of the region’s energy sector.
'Having been operational for just eleven years, it is a remarkable achievement that KEF has built and launched such a state of the art facility that is not only the best of its kind in the Middle East but as good as any in the world today, Krishnan added.
Sameer Al Ansari, executive chairman and CEO, Dubai International Capital said: “Our investment and support attest to the faith we at DIC have in KEF’s management team and their ability to sustain impressive growth in the years to come as they continue to achieve world-class standards alongside their more established European industry peers.”
In order to meet the future demand for industrial valves, JC Valves Sharjah is also planning to construct a larger facility, which will occupy an area of 100,000 sq ft, situated adjacent to the current one at Sharjah Hamriyah Free Zone.
The construction of the new facility will commence shortly and it is expected to be completed by mid-2009.
The first-of-its-kind facility in the Middle East allows JC Valves Sharjah to manufacture, assemble and test a comprehensive range of world-class industrial valves under one roof.
Established in 1997, KEF Holdings is the holding company of its two flagship businesses including JC Valves Sharjah and Emirates Techno Castings.-TradeArabia News Service